Finishing on Naturals, Worth It For Professional Environment?

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I've been sharpening my knives for almost 6 years now and I'm still learning so much from this forum as well as other sources like YouTube. What started off as a 240 and 1000 grit combination stone has expanded to a full set of waterstones ranging from 200 to 10k grit,( of course, not all of them are pro-level stuff as I bought most of them as a rookie sharpener, but I do own a 5k naniwa SS and a naniwa junpaku 8k) a diamond water stone, diamond plates and a strop. Recently, I've been considering getting myself a jnat but I know it's gonna be a deep rabbit hole as well as a big investment so I want to know what you guys think about using a jnat to finish knives that'll be used in a pro environment ( Or even a synthetic natural from JKI and JNS, is anyone has any info on these).
 

Grunt173

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I'll try to give you some insight from my take on it.I too have probably more stones then I really need but the bug got me bad along with the knives so I see where you are coming from.I have some pretty expensive stones too so I probably should add that it is more then likely,I have a sickness. I have the Gesshin Synthetic Natural from JKI and really,I do like to finish on this stone.It does a bang up job and gives me that sort of refined toothy bite that I like in my knives.It is a very nice stone and I am glad that I bought it. I recently got into Jnats and started off with an Aizu and then added a Aono Aoto later. I am still playing with them.I have learned to use my Aono before my Aizu. If I had to guess,I think my aono is like a 1 to 2k stone and my Aizu is maybe a 3 to 4 k stone.My naturals are fun to mess with but they are slower to use then synthetics and really,my Synthetic Natural gives me all I need if I want to be honest. The thing I like about my two naturals is a couple drops of water goes a long way because they are splash and go stones that don't require a lot of water,build a little slurry and they are ready to go.You say you have collected a lot of stones too so no doubt you just may have the Rika 5k stone,the same as me.If you do,then be advised that it too,is another favorite of mine and gives me an edge that I like for finishing. I do have a Snow White 8k like you that doesn't see much use except when I want to go crazy but it is not an edge I enjoy much in the kitchen.Hard to explain but I like to feel my way through a tomato so I like a little more teeth.
 
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I'll try to give you some insight from my take on it.I too have probably more stones then I really need but the bug got me bad along with the knives so I see where you are coming from.I have some pretty expensive stones too so I probably should add that it is more then likely,I have a sickness. I have the Gesshin Synthetic Natural from JKI and really,I do like to finish on this stone.It does a bang up job and gives me that sort of refined toothy bite that I like in my knives.It is a very nice stone and I am glad that I bought it. I recently got into Jnats and started off with an Aizu and then added a Aono Aoto later. I am still playing with them.I have learned to use my Aono before my Aizu. If I had to guess,I think my aono is like a 1 to 2k stone and my Aizu is maybe a 3 to 4 k stone.My naturals are fun to mess with but they are slower to use then synthetics and really,my Synthetic Natural gives me all I need if I want to be honest. The thing I like about my two naturals is a couple drops of water goes a long way because they are splash and go stones that don't require a lot of water,build a little slurry and they are ready to go.You say you have collected a lot of stones too so no doubt you just may have the Rika 5k stone,the same as me.If you do,then be advised that it too,is another favorite of mine and gives me an edge that I like for finishing. I do have a Snow White 8k like you that doesn't see much use except when I want to go crazy but it is not an edge I enjoy much in the kitchen.Hard to explain but I like to feel my way through a tomato so I like a little more teeth.
I don't have the rika yet, but I know what you mean when you said you didn't like the finish from the naniwa snow white, I go through at tons of tomatoes at work haha. That's the very reason why I'm looking for new finishing stones at the moment, especially something that leaves a nice finish and bite. And all the money spent on knives and stones are never a waste, they're an investment... Or so I tell myself while I'm buying my third gyuto in 2 months ;)
 

Grunt173

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I don't have the rika yet, but I know what you mean when you said you didn't like the finish from the naniwa snow white, I go through at tons of tomatoes at work haha. That's the very reason why I'm looking for new finishing stones at the moment, especially something that leaves a nice finish and bite. And all the money spent on knives and stones are never a waste, they're an investment... Or so I tell myself while I'm buying my third gyuto in 2 months ;)
Buying your third gyuto in three months ? I hate to tell you this partner,but you are waaaay behind.:D
 

zitangy

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There Stones for sharpening and polishing and just and stones for just sharpening.. IT depends on the tool and its intended purpose/usage

As for sharpening.. a grit is a grit depending on it s size and some are more efficient.

There are days.. that i prefer an "italian job" get it done fast and be done with it and synthetic stones.. i prefer a fast cutting and feel of stone is not so important. I rely more on the state of the black :sharpening juice" as the japanese translation puts it.. how fine the juice is, any coloration of the stone in the juice . adn how the edge "sucks on the finger print groove"

ON days that I am a Kasumi, kitaegi or hamon hunter, i need naturals be it small pieces , powder or stones. And also when i want to take the edge to the best possible limit and have an orgasmic and therapeutic pleasure or rubbing steel on the stone culminating with ever decreasing pressure for some hidden crystals to pop... the naturals comes out as i do not have synthetic beyond 12k

Anyway.. to each his own.. there is no right or no wrong... As i am approaching mid 60s, i reckon rubbing steel on stones is safer .

have fun
 

masibu

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I guess it would depend on the kitchen but for me I personally preferred synthetics as they are more consistant and efficient and much cheaper as well. My naturals see very little use at all making for a pretty expensive "waste". They do work and are nice to use but I haven't experienced an edge that isn't rivalled by synthetics (yet) and I imagine the ones that do to be extremely expensive.
 

zitangy

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[QUOTE="I imagine the ones that do to be extremely expensive.[/QUOTE]

i did play on smaller stones meant for razors... an uchi stone and Wakasa stone... ultra wide.

smaller and wider adn shorter stones are much cheaper to play with and and finding the right setup/ progression of various stones plays a part too.... there is no magic stone out there...

have fun Z
 

labor of love

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I guess it would depend on the kitchen but for me I personally preferred synthetics as they are more consistant and efficient and much cheaper as well. My naturals see very little use at all making for a pretty expensive "waste". They do work and are nice to use but I haven't experienced an edge that isn't rivalled by synthetics (yet) and I imagine the ones that do to be extremely expensive.
Right, one of the best finishing edges I’ve ever had came from a jnat. But I think I may have fooled myself into thinking that I preferred a “jnat edge” when in actuality it was just a well sharpened 8k ish edge that could also be achieved with synths.
 

tgfencer

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I too think it would highly depend on the kitchen and your own type of use.

Do you trust your coworkers? Is there a high likelihood of it being knocked off a countertop or stuck somewhere it might get damaged? Synthetics are cheaper and more easily replaced.

Are your shifts always super busy, or do you have spells of quietness when you can sharpen? An edge touch-up on a suita or a synthetic shouldnt really take much difference in time if you're skilled at sharpening, but if you have to go any lower than whatever grit you normally finish at, then definitely synthetics.

Just some things to consider, but there are many others. In this instance, I wouldn't think in terms of superiority of sharpness or the debate of whether synthetics or naturals are a better sharpening medium, I'd think in terms of practicality, potential risk to investment, and weigh your personal preferences vs your actual needs.

The kitchen I used to work in was small and cramped. If I worked the shift solo I'd bring in whatever I wanted. If either one of two specific coworkers was in with me, I'd leave everything more expensive then $50 at home.
 

panda

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nope. i used to run a full progression of naturals because i love the feedback while using them, but they take way longer than synthetics. i still use a natural as my final edge, but my progression is only two stones :D a coarse synthetic and a natural that is about 4k grit.

i dont even bother with polishing, i've never cared about it.
 

Ilia

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I've been sharpening my knives for almost 6 years now and I'm still learning so much from this forum as well as other sources like YouTube. What started off as a 240 and 1000 grit combination stone has expanded to a full set of waterstones ranging from 200 to 10k grit,( of course, not all of them are pro-level stuff as I bought most of them as a rookie sharpener, but I do own a 5k naniwa SS and a naniwa junpaku 8k) a diamond water stone, diamond plates and a strop. Recently, I've been considering getting myself a jnat but I know it's gonna be a deep rabbit hole as well as a big investment so I want to know what you guys think about using a jnat to finish knives that'll be used in a pro environment ( Or even a synthetic natural from JKI and JNS, is anyone has any info on these).
It is not necessary to choose expensive natural stone...You can easily find a stone within 200$, and in General for knives 8-10 is more than enough...Especially in a Pro environment
 
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